So, I don’t know if this has been completely obvious, but I’m kind of a scaredy cat. I KNOW! MIND BLOWN!
The fear has been there all along, but as we are finally in 2013 the reality that I will soon be traipsing around a far-away land all by my lonesome cannot be pushed aside. There are plenty of things to fear – how will I figure out how to get from place to place? What if I get sick? What if I just spend day after day totally alone and eventually go crazy but NO ONE WILL KNOW because no one is talking to me?! Even if someone tries to talk to me, I’ll undoubtedly respond my dribbling some spittle out of my mouth because clearly I am unable to handle social situations! These are real problems, people.
Okay. Okay. I know, it’s gonna be fine. Everyone, stop freaking out.
The point is, I’m a little nervous. I realized that I was subconsciously using the same coping mechanism to think about this trip as I did when I had a terrible transition to college. Back then I used to tell myself to break down the experience into little bits – “Okay, so there are five months until summer. But really, it’s more like two weeks until you go home for spring break. Just gotta get through two weeks, which is easy!”
I’ve found myself thinking of my trip that way – sure, it’s THREE WHOLE MONTHS!! A third of a baby could grow in that time! Inconceivable. But really, it’s just six weeks – actually, more like five! – until Papa McCarthy joins me. Then he’s basically there for like a MONTH (okay, three weeks), then just another two (okay, three) weeks after that! Easy peasy.
I’ve previously discussed how I would really like to go back in time and tell my 18 year old self to relax, because everything works out okay. Even though I logically understand that all will be well (and I’ve done a fairly good job at pretending I’m a super-cool go-with-the-flow chick to people when talking about this trip), the fear is still there. So what am I hoping to get out of the next three months of my life? I’m mostly excited about the part where I look back and think, “I really needed to calm down. What was I so worried about? All was well.”
I also have my mantra to keep in mind, as given to me by my wonderful friend Laura: “Keep calm. Be brave.”
And so I shall.
So what’s next? Bangkok for four days. Flying down to the islands on the Andaman coast after that. It could be worse, huh?
P.S. As per usual, Laura remains my life coach. After I had penned the first draft of this post, she sent me an email that ended with, “If you get cold feet in the coming weeks, just remember it’s an adventure. An adventure that will change you and allow you to see the world through new eyes. How exciting is that? Nothing to be scared of, just jump into the deep end with no regrets – you know how to swim.”